EU businesses to lose one million jobs in 2009

October 28th, 2008 - 1:57 am ICT by IANS  

Brussels, Oct 28 (DPA) European Union (EU) businesses Monday called for a cut in interest rates amid predictions that the bloc’s economic slowdown could lead to a loss of one million jobs in 2009.BusinessEurope, which groups national business federations from 34 European countries, also called on governments to ensure a continued flow of credit and to approve structural reforms aimed at improving the continent’s competitiveness.

According to its latest Economic Outlook, EU gross domestic product (GDP) is predicted to grow by just 0.4 percent in 2009, compared to 1.4 percent this year, with exports, imports and private consumption levels all slowing.

Unemployment is predicted to increase from seven percent to 7.8 percent, with the loss of 1.1 million jobs, compared to a net job creation of more than two million in 2008.

“The most fundamental preoccupation of the business community is obviously the way in which the impact of the financial market turmoil will play out,” the paper said.

“Even though a fully-fledged credit crunch has not yet appeared in Europe, uncertainty about the impact for companies and consumer markets has increased tremendously.”

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